China Telecom said its first-half net profit rose just 0.8% from a year earlier, mainly on the back of continued strong mobile growth.
Earnings for the six months to June 30 rose to 9.08 billion ($1.3b) year earlier, with sales up 4.5% to 107.82 billion yuan.
China Telecom’s mobile business remained its growth driver, contributing 25.1 billion yuan of revenue, up 56.8% from a year earlier. Mobile subscribers rose to 74.52 million at the end of June, of which 7.18 million were 3G subscribers.
Blended APRU fell slightly to 58.1 yuan in the first half from 63.6 yuan a year earlier, chairman and CEO Wang Xiaochu said.
Wang said China Telecom spent 6.1 billion yuan on handset subsidies in the first half, or about 27% of mobile revenue. The proportion will be lower than 30% for the full year, in line with the company’s earlier guidance, he noted.
Wang said the company is confident of adding 30 million mobile subscribers this year, including 8 million 3G subscribers.